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EKU ready for massive upgrades to several facilities

Roy Kidd Stadium, Tom Samuels Track, Earle Combs Stadium will get turf/lights facelift
Published: Jun. 29, 2021 at 6:55 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Ky. (WKYT) - Eastern Kentucky University Athletics and Recreation will complete three playing surface and two lighting projects at facilities this summer and fall.

Roy Kidd Stadium and Tom Samuels Track are getting new LED lighting this summer, while Roy Kidd Stadium and Earle Combs Stadium will receive new turf. The Hanger Field artificial surface at Roy Kidd Stadium, which was first installed in 2008, will be replaced. At Earle Combs Stadium, the infield artificial surface, which was installed before the 2010 season, will be replaced. A new artificial surface with a drainage system will replace the natural grass in the outfield making the entire field an artificial surface for the first time. Both will include fresh designs.

EKU’s intramural field artificial turf surface will also be replaced, a facility epitomizing the synergy between Campus Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics.

All three turf projects are being completed by Vescio’s Sports Fields. Each synthetic turf surface will include a slit-film UV resistant polyethylene yarn structure with a sand/crumb rubber infill mixture to provide the best quality playing surface possible.

“We are excited to perform these much-needed enhancements that will benefit our student-athletes, student body, and fans alike,” EKU Vice President and Director of Athletics Matt Roan said. “There are a number of reasons for these upgrades, most importantly ensuring the well-being of our students and student-athletes, as well as maximizing their performance. Our loyal fans will also enjoy aesthetically-pleasing fields, including our ASUN Conference logos, and light capabilities that will bolster our fan experience. We are particularly pleased that these investments positively impact our entire campus community. We are so thankful to all those who supported these projects, and we look forward to continually working to improve all of our facilities with the support of our outstanding donors and sponsors.”

The Roy Kidd Stadium light project is already underway and will meet NCAA standards for postseason play for both horizontal and vertical foot candles (over 100 foot candles illumination). The project will also provide wireless controls for tablet and smart phone access, and touchscreen controls in the press box. White, maroon, and multi-colored dynamic scenes will also be installed.

The Tom Samuels track light project will include a fixture-for-fixture LED replacement with typical on/off features.

Both light projects feature a reduction of energy and maintenance costs over typical 1500w HID equipment, minimization of spill light to adjoining properties and glare to the student-athletes and spectators, and a guarantee of light levels for safety of student-athletes and spectators. Both projects are being completed by Musco Sports Lighting.

Lighting work will be primarily completed at Roy Kidd Stadium by July 15th and at Tom Samuels Track by August 15th.

EKU football’s first contest on the new turf will be Saturday, Sept. 18 when the Colonels host Indiana State at 7 p.m. Season tickets for the 2021 EKU Football season are on sale now and can be purchased online, by calling 844-3-GOBIGE, or by visiting the EKU Athletics Ticket Office inside the all-new Athletics Fan Service Center at the Olympic Sports Training Center (Old Rec). For information on the Colonel Club, visit //EKUSports.com/feature/ColonelClub.

The baseball team will play its first game on their new turf on Feb. 22, 2022 when Kentucky State visits Richmond.

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